Hither, Page (Page & Sommers #1) by Cat Sebastian
I don’t usually seek out m/m romances, but I am a sucker for spy + country anything, so picked up this one on sale. It’s a trope-heavy small-English-village-cozy-mystery very male-heavy in terms of character and POV.
We switch between country doctor returned from WWII a little shell-shocked James Sommers, just wanting the routine village life as a balm to his tendency to relive the more gruesome doctoring he did during the war, and Leo Page– a young man plucked from a criminal life by spy master Templeton who is sent around the country to ferret out bad men and usually kill or sign their death sentence as a spy. Leo puts on personalities to manipulate whoever he is with, but with James, he finds himself exposing a little more of himself than he is used to.
Meanwhile, a charwoman has been killed, and since she worked for a wealthy industrialist, Leo Page is in town using James’ village connections to ferret out a murderer.
Their flirtation is slow and genteel, and a lot of time is spent going from village house to village house drinking copious amounts of tea and eating scones, or observing folks’ comings and goings. Alot of the character development is spent on how various male characters have been traumatized in different ways by WWII, and how the village tolerates them. Quite idyllic.
Still, Sommers & Page are a lovely duo, and the ways in which they relate despite society disapproval supportive, and I would definitely keep reading their story since its so cozy and lovely.